It’s Time to Create Your Lean Life Now

Here’s your situation: your life resembles an incumbent corporation (complex, disengaged, and listless); you want to disrupt yourself; you want to create the startup of you, but you don’t know how to do it; you are stuck between your dreams and reality.

And here’s what you know: change is hard; you’ve got to feel that you are ready for change, but there’s never enough time nor is it ever the right time; today you are too busy dealing with all the complexities of your life, that slow moving corporation, to fully contemplate or embark on changing your life.

It’s time to get off the corporate treadmill.

Stop with the excuses.
There is a better way.
You can disrupt your life.
For the better.
Now!

It’s time to create a lean life. 

It’s time to develop a MVC for the startup of you. This minimum viable change and minimum viable challenge will recalibrate your life.

An MVC may seem like a small step, but it will reverberate deeply within you; it will catalyse a different path for you, a path to greatness, a path that is so much more aligned with the true you.

You will sing again.
You will laugh.
You will lean into your lean life free from unnecessary complexities: a simpler, more agile you will emerge, ready to spring into action and grab opportunities that you have only ever wished for before.

I am running a limited number of Lean Life advisory sessions for entrepreneurs and business owners. These are intensive sessions designed to kickstart the startup of you. You will not only develop your MVC, but will formulate a Life Canvas that you can use to iterate and chart your reinvention.

If you are interested in applying for one of these sessions let me know by email (rand at exoscalr dot com) and I’ll be in touch.

How to Meditate More Self-Awareness

This is Day Twenty Nine in the 30 Days of Reinvention Video Series [#30DaysReinvention].

Connect to a mindful awareness of your feelings at both a mental and physical level with this guided meditation.

Meditation Can Make You A Better Leader. Here’s How…

The good news is that meditation can benefit us in three ways:

  1. It can treat depression and reduce stress,
  2. It can raise our happiness set point, and
  3. It can help make us a better leader.

I touch on meditation, mindfulness and the power of living in the now in my new book Fierce Reinvention, which also includes a guided meditation exercise so that you can feel this power first hand.

Think of meditation as the process of substituting your discursive mind with another object of attention, such as your breath, a chant or a sound. It’s that simple.

But beware, meditation is not a form of self-help in who to become or how to be.

Here’s the kicker: meditation is a path of fierceness, reinvention, and wisdom; it is a path to help us discover who we truly are, not who we are expected to be because of some internal or external agenda.

What’s the magic formula?

Meditation requires us to be fierce, because it can be anything but peaceful. In meditation we don’t shut out anything that comes up no matter how uncomfortable we may feel with an emotion, memory, or thought that arrives while we are in this state.

When we meditate we let go of the barriers and walls we have built around us; we stop grasping for things we want and guarding against things we don’t want.

Amazingly, when this happens we come to realize how vulnerable we are; we see vulnerability all around us. And this foundational insight increases our propensity for compassion. And it gets even better because compassion is a gateway to becoming a better leader.

Discover more about meditation, mindfulness and the power of living in the now in my new book, Fierce Reinvention: A Guide to Harnessing Your Superpowers for Entrepreneurial and Leadership Success ($11.99 digital, $15.99 print (USD), October 2017), which is available from Amazon.

Here’s Why It’s Time to Find Your Soul Work

Sarah Francis is a winemaker. She lives in Calistoga in the beautiful Napa Valley region of California. At least it was beautiful when she started making wine there eight years ago. Today part of it resembles a war zone. A fire ripped through the region in October, causing untold death and destruction.

Yet Sarah has continued making wine. She tells us that she is just as excited and blessed as she was on the first day she made her first wine.

That feeling has never left her: it makes her weep; it sends her to her knees; and it answers her soul’s beckoning.

Her advice is for you to find your soul’s work.

First she points to the wise words of Howard Thurman: “Do not ask what the world needs, instead find what makes you come alive and go do this, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.

And then Sarah says, “A vineyard helped me come alive! I’ve never been more joyful than now!”

Isn’t it time YOU came alive. Isn’t it time you focused on your SOUL WORK!

How to Use the Power of Visualization

This is Day Twenty Five in the 30 Days of Reinvention Video Series [#30DaysReinvention].

Achieve more by visualizing success in advance.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

Hey, it’s Rand,

Years ago I became national champion in a very athletic sporting event that also included a fair amount of strategy.

In addition to rigorous physical training I maintained a daily positive visualisation practice.

Picturing myself winning, was as powerful as actually practicing.

The more you visualise a goal or outcome in advance, the more ability you have of achieving it.

 But bear in mind that your mind’s DNA, the way that it thinks, can either express itself negatively or positively.

If you visualise a disaster, guess what, you will most likely end up with a disaster.

But if you can visualise how a situation will play out as a success then you’re putting a positive spin on it and shifting your inner voice to a positive feel about that event this will cause every single fibre of your being to shift positively as well.

If you don’t make positive visualisation a daily practice, then your default negative voice will kick in and override any visualisation work you may have done previously.

Don’t think that once you are successful this all goes away. Even the most successful people in the world grapple with this on a daily basis. The table stakes simply get higher. If you fail after a big success, you fall harder.

Consider your goals of consequence and visualize being successful with them first. From there, cascade down into your daily activities and  visualise success with them.

You want to have a positive frame of mind all the way from your high-level goals down to your daily activities.

 if you have a positive view on a meeting, but a negative view over all, that will negatively impact the meeting. It may not totally cancel out the positive thoughts you have conjured up, but at the very least it will become a source of confusion for other participants who will pick up on your mixed messages. Aim to have that positive expression cascading all the way by visualising  how the meeting will turn out and thinking positively on a constant basis at different times during the day.

Want to Exist in the Now, Be Happy and Less Stressed?

As revealed in my new book, Fierce Reinvention, there are three things you can do to increase your ‘now’ time.

Now time is good for you because it raises your happiness levels, helps you to de-stress and decreases the amount of negative chatter in your mind.

So let’s get started:

  1. Minimize the potential for distractions

Perhaps unsurprisingly, you can minimize the potential for distractions by keeping an uncluttered workspace, placing your mobile phone on silent and, while you are wanting to focus, removing any form of email or social notification and abstaining from accessing any form of social media.

  1. Create focus time

No doubt about it, you can create focus time by allocating calendar slots for progressing your prioritized projects and then sticking to them. Within these 90-minute slots make sure to take a 10-minute break mid way to stretch, look at the horizon and breathe in the world around you.

Give the task your full attention and notice when your mind wanders. Acknowledge the intruding thought and gently, but fiercely return your mind to the task at hand.

  1. Build a “now” practice

Wham! There is no end point you are trying to get to when practicing living in the now. It is all about building up to a regular practice of now-related behaviors.

And boom! You’re there: the more you practice being present, in the now, the better you will become at achieving this depth of focus.

The result? You may also start to notice the compulsions to ‘quickly check’ your email or your social media feed become weaker. As your practice grows the intruding thoughts won’t be as loud and they will arrive less often and with less fanfare, and you will easily be able to shuffle them on and stay focused. This indicates that you are positively shifting your behavior and strengthening your ‘now’ practice.

Taken from my new book, Fierce Reinvention: A Guide to Harnessing Your Superpowers for Entrepreneurial and Leadership Success ($11.99 digital, $15.99 print (USD), October 2017) is available from Amazon.

How to Find Your Soul Voice

This is Day Twenty One in the 30 Days of Reinvention Video Series [#30DaysReinvention].

Break the vicious cycle of busyness and delayed joy.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

Hey it’s Rand,

It can take months, even years to reinvent yourself.

The journey usually starts with a sense of the collapse of your ego structure.

Something much deeper within you seeks to voice itself. Think of this as your soul voice.

At this point you begin to recalibrate the structures that surround you. To align with your soul voice.

You may need to change:

  • your workplace
  • your community
  • your activities.

The catalyst for starting this journey may be a profound feeling of apathy; it may be a feeling of anger or even isolation.

Whatever it is that signals the breaking of the vicious cycle of busyness and delayed joy for you, you should welcome it with open arms.

My near death experience broke my vicious cycle: I still get goose bumps thinking about it; I was able to still my busy mind and focus inward; I peeled back layer upon layer, until all that remained was my inner voice; with constant exercise it became stronger, and as it did I became calmer and more attuned to the universe. For the first time, pure joy entered my life.

Be aware that the journey of reinvention can be a painful time, filled with confusion and fear; repressed feelings can flood into your consciousness; moments of uncertainty about the path forward can hinder your progress.

But it is such a worthwhile journey. Instead of being filled with your own joyless noise, you will begin to listen at a deeper level. And you will start to hear what the people around you are really saying.

Invest the time to determine what excites you; invest the time to determine what delivers you real meaning; work on that the rest of your life.

This work’s true value is fulfilment and inner joy. This work is priceless.

 

How to Punch Through Failure

This is Day Eighteen in the 30 Days of Reinvention Video Series [#30DaysReinvention].

Adopt behaviors that make failure a learning exercise.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

Hey it’s Rand,

Don’t let fear prevent you from doing what you need to do to have an impact.

One of our biggest fears is the fear of failure. You need to comfortably face this fear and there are behaviours you should adopt to help you punch through failure.

Firstly, fail fast and succeed slow.

Don’t be afraid to experiment. Most successful leaders failed  multiple time before they had a success.

Robert Kiyosaki says, “Failure is part of the process of success. People who avoid failure also avoid success.”

Secondly, succeed and then fail.

A big success can hold us to a high bar of what success is. This can make us less open to failure. Put your ego aside, lower your benchmarks and be prepared to fail before your next success.

This will relieve the pressure, and allow you to iterate more with more chance of magic happening.

Winston Churchill said, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal.”

Thirdly, get into failure flow.

Be mindful of failure, because failing without learning is a wasteful exercise.

Try to be aware of what is happening as a project fails. If you are in failure flow you will see the elements that lead to failure as if in slow motion.

Henry Ford said, “The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.”

Fourthly, only fail when you cannot succeed.

Let’s face it, failure sucks. It sets you back. It impacts the lives of people who believe in you. It impacts the lives of people who rely on you.

Have grit and persistence  and don’t choose failure as an easy way out when the going gets tough.

Fifthly, fail resiliently.

Get up, take the hit and move forward.

When you fail and I hope you will, how do you treat it?

Yep, your heard right: I want you to fail; I want you to fail often!

Why?

Because every failure brings you one step closer to success.

How you deal with each failure, big or small, determines whether you will succeed.

CS Lewis said, Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement.”

Want to Find and Achieve Your Dream Goals?

Are you sick and tired of all the limitations that are constantly being placed on you: the culture in your work place, the type of job that is right for you, the demand for upbeat posts on social media, the speed you drive at, the long line at the airport check-in?

We’ve all been there.

But here’s the good news. Today is different.

Why?

Because in my new book, Fierce Reinvention, I give you unfettered permission to dream: I challenge you to forget any present constraints you may feel; I challenge you to not focus on any likely difficulties that may arise making it hard or impossible to achieve your goal.

Boom!

Just like that, you have permission to focus on your dream.

Let’s jump right in. Complete the following four sentences as a primer to open your mind to all possibilities and empower you to take your dream further:

  • Forget the Nobel Prize. Forget an Olympic gold medal, I would love to win…
  • Since anything is possible, I want to achieve…
  • Since there are no constraints around me, the limits of my potential are…
  • I feel anxious about setting this goal out one to two years, but if I set it at x years I stop worrying about how it might be achieved.

Now that you’ve set your goal let me ask, “What if you were 10x bolder in your thinking?”

“What about 100x?”

Preferably say your answers out loud.

Now repeat them even louder and more assertively and then capture them in your journal.

Lastly, I want you to imagine that your goal has become a truly viral moonshot goal. It’s magnetic and people are rallying around it.

Let me now ask, “What if you had all the support you could ever need to achieve your goal, what would be possible then?”

What’s stopping you? I’ve given you all the permission you’ll ever need.

For more techniques to find and make your wildest dreams a reality see my new book, Fierce Reinvention: A Guide to Harnessing Your Superpowers for Entrepreneurial and Leadership Success ($11.99 digital, $15.99 print (USD), October 2017), which is available from Amazon and other leading online bookstores.

How to Quieten Your Mind

This is Day Eleven in the 30 Days of Reinvention Video Series [#30DaysReinvention].

Build a meditation practice and align your body and mind.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

Hey it’s Rand,

Our monkey minds constantly barrage us with negative chatter:

“I’m not good enough”

“She will let me down”

“Who is this guy?”

But by asking yourself, “What do I need to prove?”

And by realising that there is nothing to prove to your inner self, to your observer, you significantly reduce that internal dialogue, that monkey mind chatter and you will begin to convert  the negativity into positive, connective, universal thoughts that transcend the need to prove yourself to others and to society at large.

So much of our time is taken up with distracting thoughts that leave us in a fractured state of mind. Off-task thinking and mind wandering both increase that mindless chatter.

So what can we do to keep ourselves on task and aligned?

The answer is Meditation. It is fantastic for bringing your mind back into focus.

Think of meditation as the practice of aligning mind and body. It is less about switching off all your thinking and more about relaxing with your thoughts: acknowledging them without judgement and letting them pass through you without trying to hold onto them.

Your to-do list will still be there when you finish meditating, but during your meditation practice you need to be fiercely gentle with yourself, noticing thoughts and feelings but not acting on them.

In meditation you will acknowledge a thought and then let it pass through your mind, comfortable that it is something you can take care of after you finish your session.

Shifting from your everyday dream-like wandering to a more focused state, you substitute the chatter of your discursive mind with another, more calming object of attention. This could be your breath, or it could be a chanted mantra.

A meditation practice allows you to see the gap that exists between your everyday narrative, your story, and what manifests once you quiet down all the chatter and achieve relative stillness.